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Volunteering as a befriender for New Bridge carries with it both serious challenges and genuine rewards. My own experience as a befriender has challenged me in ways that I could not have anticipated, and has shaped my own attitudes and outlook not just regarding those in custody but towards life in general

It's part of my social life; it's widened my social circle; I get real letters delivered by the postman, to break up the constant stream of emails and texts. And if I get excited at the sight of an envelope on the doormat, how must a prisoner feel?

Could you spare a few hours a month to support some of society's most isolated and marginalised people?

We ask our volunteers to commit to the following:

  • write fortnightly letters to someone in prison
  • travel to visit this person 4 times a year
  • attend a monthly volunteer support group meeting (via zoom or in person)
  • submit a monthly update outlining the number of letters sent/visits made

If you are compassionate, non-judgemental, a good listener and can commit to the requirements outlined above, we would love to hear from you.

There are several stages to the onboarding process: once you submit your application, you will be invited to a one-to-one interview over zoom. Successful applicants will then attend our volunteer training session (this is delivered in two parts - the first over zoom and the second in our London office, with the option to select a zoom-only option if you cannot travel to London). Volunteers will then attend a support group meeting to get a feel for the role from other volunteers, before they are then matched with a person in prison.

*Please note that you will need to include details (name, contact information, relation to you) of two people we can contact for character references. If you are unsure who to approach as a referee (e.g. you are a student and don't have an employer you can include) then please drop us an email at and we'll help you with this*

Click here to complete our online application form

Or download a Word version here

Read our Volunteer Recruitment & Management Policy

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